Category Archives: Beauty

Pastel Palette

Hey Sand Stars!

I hope you have all been well. During Ramadan, I try and keep work to a minimum, but sometimes shoots and the like pop up now and then. Earlier this week I had a simple photo shoot and was inspired by Amber Heard’s soft and subtle makeup (see pic below).

The makeup was achieved with the help of some of my favourites: MAC foundation; a Sephora colour palette; Max Factor kohl; a Chanel lip liner and Benefit mascara.

I layered frosty pinks and lilacs on my eyelids and only applied the kohl on the bottom of the eye to make my eyes look more natural. A sweep of blush on the cheeks and pale pink lipgloss (all from the Sephora palette) finished things off.

These pinkish shades are a perfect idea for summer vacations (you don’t want to look overdone as you travel). Remember that makeup is not a mask and is simply used to highlight your already-gorgeous features ๐Ÿ™‚

Live, Love & Laugh LittlePianoDiva style!

M

x

In the pink with soft, rosy-toned makeup. Photography by Tahmeed Omar for Pho-Tah.

In the pink with soft, rosy-toned makeup. Photography by Tahmeed Omar for Pho-Tah.

Makeup inspiration! Photo courtesy www.popsugar.com

Makeup inspiration! Photo by http://www.popsugar.com

MAC Studio Fix Foundation. Photo courtesy www.lashpashcosmetics.co.uk

MAC Studio Fix Foundation. Photo by http://www.lashpashcosmetics.co.uk

This Sephora palette is a dream. Since I'm often travelling, it's awesome to have my eyeshadows, cheek and lip tints in one box! Photo courtesy www.polyvore.com

This Sephora palette is a dream. Since I’m often travelling, it’s awesome to have my eyeshadows, cheek and lip tints in one box! Photo by http://www.polyvore.com

This is my favourite non-liquid liner. Photo courtesy www.blushcosmetics.com

This is my favourite non-liquid liner. Photo by http://www.blushcosmetics.com

This Chanel liner feels like satin on my lips! Remember to shade in your lips with the pencil as, if your lipstick fades, the colour of the liner will remain. Photo courtesy www.makeupandbeauty.com

This Chanel liner feels like satin on my lips! Remember to shade in your lips with the pencil as, if your lipstick fades, the colour of the liner will remain. Photo by http://www.makeupandbeauty.com

I am in LOVE with this mascara that goes on like a dream, doesn't clump and lasts all day! Photo by www.ysislorenna.com

I am in LOVE with this mascara that goes on like a dream, doesn’t clump and lasts all day! Photo by http://www.ysislorenna.com

Old Blue Eyes

Hey Sand Stars

A while back I began a series of Youtube videos with hair and beauty tips/tutorials, along with me playing some of my favourite pieces. If I’m brutally honest I just got really bored of the whole thing :/ Perhaps one day I’ll pick up Notes From LittlePianoDiva again! Anyway, I digress; one of the products I used on the channel was in the YSL Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils in electric blue (40 L 100).ย I’ve been using the product continuously since then and thought I’d re-review the mascara on here.

Firstly, the mascara has the most amazing, rich florally smell which tells me of the nourishing oils that are used (YSL is a luxe beauty brand after all, in relation to the Saint Laurent brand). The mascara glides on easily, however you will only see the colour subtly. I love the fact that the electric blue is quite demure, because you can wear it with more outfits than if it was more overly-pronounced on your eyelashes.

The mascara wasn’t as cake-y as my other mascaras and, best of all, it lasted all day without irritating my sensitive eyes. It does give that faux-eyelash effect as it promises; I suggest wriggling the wand at the base of your eyelashes and glide the brush up gently to create the volume.

If you’d like to check out the video, see here:

YSL Mascara Effet Faux Cils in electric blue. Photo by Tahmeed Omar.

YSL Mascara Effet Faux Cils in electric blue. Photo by Tahmeed Omar.

Photo: douglas.de

Photo: douglas.de

MAC + ‘Cheese!’: Studio Fix Fluid Foundation

Hey Sand Stars

As I’m continuously performing, doing shoots or media appearances, I often have to wear makeup. Do I like to? NO. But, it comes with the territory. It’s therefore important for me to use makeup that feels light on my face.

When I’m doing my own makeup for shoots or performances, I use MAC Studio Fix Fluid (my shade is NC35) as, over the years, I’ve found the liquid foundation the best for my skin type (which is very unpredictable and sensitive!) There are times I use other foundations from other brands (especially on location, when the makeup artist will use his/her own go-to makeup brand) but I do always come back to my trusty MAC!

The texture of the liquid is silky and it goes onto the skin rather easily. Before application, I’d suggest moisturising your face beforehand or (for everyday wear) mix a drop of your moisturiser with a drop of foundation to created lighter coverage. Remember to blend well and don’t forget to smooth the product onto your neck; especially when there will be photos. Considering this product is bestย used for photography, it’s important that your face and neck are the same shade! ๐Ÿ˜‰ The finish is matte (the product is oil-free, which is perfect for those who have an oily T-zone like myself). It comes with built-in sun protection, which is perfect for girls on the go who don’t have time to apply too many products.

Next time you’re going out and especially if you want to look Instagram-ready, I suggest using this particular foundation. When you take the photo, don’t forget to say ‘MAC and cheese!’ ๐Ÿ˜‰

Live, Love & Laugh ‘Littlepianodiva’ Style

M

xo

Wearing MAC Studio Fix Fluid Foundation at a shoot. Photography by Sarah Clemence. Shot at Jumeirah Al Qasr Hotel.

Wearing MAC Studio Fix Fluid Foundation at a shoot. Photography by Sarah Clemence. Shot at Jumeirah Al Qasr Hotel.

Scent Of A Woman

Hey Sand Stars

I am a stickler for smells; I can always smell baking bread, cookies in the oven and fresh lilies from a mile away (the disadvantage is that some really foofy smells tend to reach me before other people, too! Ewww ๐Ÿ˜ฆ ).

The smell of watermelon reminds me of my childhood summers; eating fresh fruit and running through the sprinklers in the garden to cool off. Similarly, rose talcum powder smells remind me of my grammy. The sharp smell of fire reminds me of frosty winters in Johannesburg and certain spices remind me of when I first arrived in Dubai and wandered through the souks.

Our sense of smell has the ability to transport us back in time or create a vision in our mind that is pleasurable (hot chocolate, anyone?? โค ). This is why most of us (men and women) turn to our favourite perfumes to make us feel confident or remind us of a pleasant past experience.

I personally love perfumes with light, floral tones; it’s incredibly feminine and more subtle than the stronger, more woody-noted perfumes. My go-to scents are J’Adore and Miss Dior by Dior. If I’m in the mood for something more sweet, then it’s Chance by Chanel. When wearing abaya and attending mosque I’ll wear an oil-based perfume like the Oud perfumes that I purchased in Saudi Arabia.

As a person whose day-to-day style is influenced by her moods, I’ll wear a stronger, slightly more masculine scent like Gucci Premiere if I’m feeling a little bad-a** or Eau des Merveilles by Hermes (one of my all-time faves) if I want to feel like I want to leave a more lasting impression ๐Ÿ˜‰

You don’t have to spend loads of money on perfumes. Some less expensive alternatives include Florentyna from Marks & Spencer or check out the body mists from Bath & Body Works or The Body Shop. A friend also recently got me a ginger perfume from Germany which has a unique, spicy scent. The idea is to make yourself feel good with your scents; not buying a perfume for the brand name.

And I don’t agree with wearing the same perfume day in and day out; play with your scents from day to day and wear a more exotic perfume for nights out.

Now go out there and smell wonderful!

Live, Love & Laugh ‘Littlepianodiva’ Style

M

xo

From a Marks & Spencer brand influencer engagement. The perfume is Florentyna and is a cheaper alternative to more expensive perfumes.

From a Marks & Spencer brand influencer engagement. The perfume is Florentyna and is a cheaper alternative to more expensive perfumes. Photography by Tahmeed Omar.

IMG_3491

Chance by Chanel with pink pearls by Gemoro Jewellery Dubai; the ultimate in class! Photo courtesy Gemoro Jewellery.

IMG_0648

Yummy ginger perfume; a gift from a friend when she visited Germany.

L’oreal Locks: It’s Totally Worth It

Hey Sand Stars

My hair has gone through many phases: too thick, too thin, too dry, too oily… (there were also a few bad haircuts in-between, but that’s a subject for another day). The point is; my hair is moody.

Very moody.

I tend to switch from shampoo to shampoo every few months or so and lately I’ve found that my hair has been maintainable for the most part, due to my current shampoo from the L’Oreal Elvive Range. If I’m brutally honest, I’ve always used L’Oreal products (both skin and hair care products) and even when I sway away from the brand I tend to gravitate right back to it after a while. I’ve tried the Elvive Nutri-Gloss shampoo and conditioner before and am now (thankfully) satisfied with the Elvive Anti-Breakage shampoo and conditioner (the orange one, for those, like me, who don’t remember names ๐Ÿ˜‰ ).

Due to constant styling for performances and shoots, I like to keep it simple on my days off (a simple blow-dry will do; applying L’Oreal Studio Silk & Gloss Hot Straight Smoothing Spritz to protect my hair from the heat). It’s best to wash hair as often as possible if you have oily hair (it sucks because I’m so lazy to blow-dry it myself- they don’t call me Littlepianodiva for nothing you know ๐Ÿ˜› ).

When washing, first rinse the hair through then apply a coin-sized amount to the ends of your hair. Lather well then bring this diluted shampoo solution to the hair on your head; massaging gently. Rinse well, then repeat. I usually just put conditioner on the ends after shampooing and then rinse well, ending off with a cold water rinse (it’s not exactly comfortable, but it seals in the hair cuticle for shine).

Remember, though, that products are not the only solution for problem hair. One should eat healthily (take vitamins for hair, skin and nails,too, if possible) and drink loads of water to keep the body continuously cleansed.

Thanks to L’Oreal, this Littlepianodiva tends to often feel ‘worth it’ ๐Ÿ˜‰

Live, Love & Laugh ‘Littlepianodiva’ Style!

M

xo

A fave haircare brand of mine: L'Oreal Elvive. Photo by Tahmeed Omar & gown by Meher & Riddhima.

A fave haircare brand of mine: L’Oreal Elvive. Photo by Tahmeed Omar & gown by Meher & Riddhima.

MAC Skincare

Hey Sand Stars

Living in Dubai generally wreaks havoc on the skin of everyone- all thanks to the humidity, dust etc. I have quite oily, sensitive skin and am always battling to find products that suit me.

I was really lucky to have come across MAC Makeup’s Oil Control Lotion. I don’t use a lot of product (only two pumps from the bottle), but it glides on easily and is incredibly light. I apply it twice daily; once in the morning and once at night after cleansing.

The bottle is 50 ml and will last for a while if you, like me, only use a tiny bit. To further avoid your skin getting more oily and thus prone to breakouts; stay away from fried foods and chocolate (I know; it sucks SO bad!!!) BUUUT, if you CANNOT stay away, just increase your intake of water when having those fries or that DELICIOUS chocolate fondant ๐Ÿ˜‰

When I represented Jergens Creams for the Middle East, I started a series of ‘Beauty Beliefs’ that I hoped would inspire my supporters. With the great feedback I received, I’ll be continuing with theseย each week on here!

So: Beauty Belief #1 : Don’t use too many beauty products on your skin as they could make your skin condition worse. Use products sparingly and remember to hydrate to not only make your skin glowing and healthy but to also cleanse your body from the inside.

Live, Love & Laugh ‘Littlepianodiva’ Style

M

xo

Screen Shot 2014-11-02 at 2.03.06 PM